Okrika Bale

2011

Series of 5 sculptures Second-hand clothes, ropes,

variable dimensions

The sculptural series Okrika Bale is the result of a survey conducted in collaboration with the Association San Vincenzo Ca’ Letizia, the Mestre chapter of the St Vincent de Paul Society Charities, an international lay Catholic organization dedicated to assisting those in need through the invaluable contribution of a large group of volunteers. During my residency in Venice, with their support,I had the opportunity to study the process of collection and export of used clothing from Italy to the African continent. Some of these used clothes have been integrated into the sculptures, which deliberately take the form of “okrika” bales, the typical form in which the packaged clothing arrives for sale on the Nigerian market. The sculptures show the paradox of a shipment, which begins with an act of charity, but, while in transit, often gives in to the dynamics of an uncontrollable monetary exchange.

 

    

    

Second Hand Museum

2011

Installation, clothing, mixed textiles and wood, variable dimensions

Second Hand Museum, an integral part of Habitus, a project that specifically focuses on the dynamics that govern the used clothes market, which since the early 1970s has significantly contributed to the decline and the subsequent deep crisis of the local textiles industry in Nigeria. The decision to create a collection of handmade clothes, inspired by techniques and workmanship of the fabrics in the different Venetian museums, as well as those of Nigeria, was prompted by the search for a creative response to the excessive standardization of contemporary clothing and the historical and symbolic image associated with it. The second hand museum is a museum installation showcasing five authentic testimonies of a possible history, in which the clothing patterns recognized and codified in the Venetian tradition are revisited by being mixed and hybridized through the use of repurposed and second hand materials.

 

  

About 1000

2011

Outdoor installation, variable dimensions

T-shirts, clips, rope

About 1000 is an installation that takes its theme from the way laundry is hung out to dry in the streets of Venice. The laundry lines are strung with a thousand red garments, T-shirts and other types of clothing, which act as a clear reference to the anniversary of the Unification of Italy. The red shirt, the protagonist of the birth of the Kingdom of Italy, was nothing but a sort of blouse, a work smock worn by workers and artisans. Historical sources indicate that the shirts were handmade using cheap fabric collected by volunteers from a consortium of Uruguayan butchers. The artist tries to establish a connection with Italian “historical reality”, made up of multiple scattered contents that can only be understood when we attempt to establish a relationship between our own history, our life’s experience, and the experience of the world surrounding us.